Goddess Rhiannon Statue
of Horses and Fertility (Abundance)
Rhiannon is highly intelligent, politically strategic, and famed for her
wealth and generosity. She is a strong minded Otherworld woman, who chooses
Pwyll, prince of Dyfed (west Wales), as her consort, in preference to another
man to whom she has already been betrothed. Their son is the hero Pryderi, who
later inherits the lordship of Dyfed.
Rhiannon as a mother endures tragedy when her
newborn child is abducted, and she is accused of infanticide. As a widow she
marries Manawydan of the British royal family, and has further adventures
Like some other figures of British/ Welsh literary tradition, Rhiannon may be a
reflex of an earlier Celtic deity. Her name appears to derive from the
reconstructed Brittonic form *Rīgantōna, a derivative of *rīgan-
In the First Branch Rhiannon is strongly
associated with horses, and so is her son Pryderi. She is often considered to be
related to the Gaulish horse goddess Epona. The resemblance is her horse
affinity, and her son's, as mare and foal; also a paradoxical way of sitting on
her horse in a calm, static way,
like a key image of Epona.
Rhiannon's original story is mainly in the First Branch of the Mabinogi, with
more in the Third Branch.
This artist has aligned her with a highly stylized belt and a Victorian